By Rob Kiser
Call Sports Editor
For Piqua girls basketball coach Rory Hoke, the decision wasn’t about wins or losses.
It was simply time to focus on his family.
Hoke, who had a 24-63 record as the Piqua coach, made the decision to resign Monday morning.
“I have been coaching for 13 years,” the former Covington High School star said. “My family has allowed me to do this. My kids have a lot of different things going on and it is time for me to spend more time with my family.”
Piqua athletic director Chip Hare understood Hoke’s decision.
“We had talked throughout the year about two things,” Hare said. “Rory’s boys are at a young age and he wants to see them through as they start with youth programs. And he wanted to finish with the group he started with as freshman.”
After coaching the current senior glass to the GWOC North title as eighth graders, who took over the Piqua varsity job their freshman seasons.
“I wanted to see this all the way through with them and I did that,” Hoke said.
Hoke knows the record doesn’t reflect the progress the Lady Indians program has made during his time as coach.
“When I started, everybody looked at us as an easy win,” Hoke said. “During my time, we beat every team in the GWOC North at least once and nobody looked at us as an easy win. We were hoping to have double-digit wins this year and didn’t quite get there.”
And Hoke’s final win was one he will never forget.
The Lady Indians closed the regular season by beating Troy — Piqua’s first win over the rival since the 2001-02 season.
“That was special to get that win,” Hoke said. “That is one of the most exciting wins I have been involved with here. It was great for the kids because they worked hard to get the win.”
Hoke sees a bright future for the Lady Indians program.
“We have a strong group of seniors returning next year,” he said. “Both of the junior high teams had a good year and we have a strong youth program. Everything is in place. I just want to thank the administration for the opportunity they gave me and all their support.”
Hare also feels good about the future of the program.
Anyone interested in the job can email him at firstname.lastname@example.org
“This year was the first year we had a freshman team,” Hare said. “That is a credit to Rory (Hoke) and his staff. I feel good about the fact someone can come in and take over a good program. Rory is leaving it in a good place.”
Which is all anyone could ask.